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Tobias Alm: Traces of function and Terhi Tolvanen: Introduction

By United States


Terhi Tolvanen
Terhi Tolvanen, 2010, necklace ‘Petite Chaîne’, wood, silver, smokey quartz, textile, photographer: Eddo Hartmann

 

Susan Cummins: How would you describe the kind of contemporary jewelry you represent?

Rob Koudijs: Here’s what it says on our website: ‘The gallery specializes in contemporary art jewelry which communicates ideas, has sculptural qualities and an innovative use of materials. The gallery represents a very motivated group of jewelry artists who produce work challenging the borders of the applied and the fine arts.’ This still hold true for what we are aiming for and both exhibitions live up to this goal.

Have you represented the two jewelers you are featuring in this exhibition for a long time?

Yes, I’m pleased to say we both picked them when they graduated. Terhi Tolvanen when she had just finished her master-education at the Sandberg Institute (connected to the Rietveld Academy) here in Amsterdam; Tobias Alm at the time he made his bachelor exhibition at Ädellab (Metal Department), Konstfack, Stockholm in Sweden in 2009.

Terhi Tolvanen
Terhi Tolvanen, 2010, necklace ‘Petite Chaîne’, wood, silver, smokey quartz, textile, photographer: Eddo Hartmann

 

Susan Cummins: How would you describe the kind of contemporary jewelry you represent?

Rob Koudijs: Here’s what it says on our website: ‘The gallery specializes in contemporary art jewelry which communicates ideas, has sculptural qualities and an innovative use of materials. The gallery represents a very motivated group of jewelry artists who produce work challenging the borders of the applied and the fine arts.’ This still hold true for what we are aiming for and both exhibitions live up to this goal.

Have you represented the two jewelers you are featuring in this exhibition for a long time?

Yes, I’m pleased to say we both picked them when they graduated. Terhi Tolvanen when she had just finished her master-education at the Sandberg Institute (connected to the Rietveld Academy) here in Amsterdam; Tobias Alm at the time he made his bachelor exhibition at Ädellab (Metal Department), Konstfack, Stockholm in Sweden in 2009.

How does the jewelry in this exhibition fit into their body of work?

Terhi Tolvanen
Terhi Tolvanen

 Tobias Alm is one of those young artists who graduate and hurl themselves at their work. Our request to show his graduation pieces resulted three months later in a completely new and exceptional body of work and with it produced a very successful and beautiful exhibition in October 2009. Since then we have been able to show new work every time at art fairs like Object and Collect. All the work is made of wood (though very different from Terhi’s branches) with added elements made from, for instance, rigid-foam, often connected with textile (shoe-lace like cord). All his jewelry is bold in size and abstract-sculptural in shape. The last two years traces of former use (or the suggestion of it) emerged and there are references to the vernacular of tools and utensils. In the present exhibition this sort of visual language was the starting point of the entire collection, with which Tobias once again introduced a new facet to his art. For a more extensive introduction visit our website.

Can you give us the flavor of the personalities of these two jewelers?

They are both very dedicated to what they are doing and that’s probably the reason they are pleasant to work with, reliable and very nice people in all other respects.

What do you think is the most interesting aspect of what they are doing?

Tobias Alm
Tobias Alm

Have any of these jeweler’s works gone into museum collections?

Tobias Alm
Tobias Alm, 2012, necklace ’16’, wood, cotton, photographer Tobias Alm

Is this jewelry wearable? Is wearability an important aspect to you?

Wearable: yes, definitely! Wearability is not our main concern, for the artistic intentions are allowed to prevail, but there always should be some sort of connection with jewelry. And, as you know, wearing contemporary jewelry is very gratifying! Terhi’s work a bit easier to wear because it is somewhat more conventional in size and she is very precise in molding necklaces on a dummy so they will fit like a glove. Tobias’s brooches and necklaces are mostly a bit bigger than is common, but that does not mean unwearable: it really surprised us how well his necklaces fit the body when worn. Putting on one of his brooches is always a treat because of its flamboyance, if you intend to make a flashy entrance: this is the thing to wear!

Have you produced a catalog or other material to accompany the exhibition?

For both exhibitions there are introductions on our website.

Has it been, or is it going to be, reviewed?

Rob Koudijs
Rob Koudijs

 

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